I don't know how to start this so I am just going to go for it. I recently had the opportunity to submit samples of my work to a company to be reviewed as a possible contributor for some upcoming photography guides. I don't know how long until I will hear back or even if I will hear back but I hope to be selected. Some of you may know this already but I am completely self taught, and by that I mean I didn't go to school or take any classes anywhere, everything I have learned has been from my own trials and experiments, or from watching Youtube videos. It's funny that is the time we live in where we have such great access to all kinds of information.
I have always had the desire to teach others. Over the years I have had that chance in ways that most people don't really think of as teaching. I currently work retail as my full time job and in the 11+ years of doing that I have been a sales leader, department manager, and even a store manager. Training new employees or even old employees on new things has always been something that I enjoy. Everyone learns in different ways and at different paces. I take great pride in the fact that over the years I have been told by many employees that I had an influence on them, or that they didn't get something until I talked with them. It is an incredible feeling to impact someone like that.
Aside from my retail career I am a music journalist. I interview bands and put out album reviews and shoot the shows. I have had the opportunity to take a couple people under my wing so to speak with this as well. Some of them have worked out great, and others have moved on to other things. The question I get asked all the time is "Don't you get nervous talking to them?" the answer is "no". I have been nervous before, there are a few artists that I have worked with that I have looked up to for a long time, but at the end of it all they are just people doing what they love. I've been thanked by PR teams, Tour Managers, and even artists for the way that I conduct myself and my interviews. To me it isn't an interview, it is a conversation. If you talk to people like human beings then you will get honest answers.
And finally as a photographer I have had the chance to help a couple people in their ventures. As with most things they won't all admit that they learned anything from me, some of them may even say that I did nothing for them. But the truth is that is just a defense. People are always so wrapped up with self image that they are afraid to admit that they didn't know something, or that they had to get help from someone else. I remember the first wedding I shot. I honestly was extremely nervous about it. It was for a good friend and we had worked out a deal, but the whole time I was taking pictures I found myself asking "Was that the right angle?" or "Is that going to turn out the right way?". Once I gave them the images they were very happy with them and it made me feel better about it. Fast forward to the 2nd wedding I shot. Now I am being asked by a friend to assist her, because it is her first wedding, and I gladly accepted. She knew the couple already, I did not, and we went over a variety of things leading up to the day. Things that people don't always think about, how many guests, what family members need to be in the shots, and when to do candid shots. It was awesome for me, though I only had 1 wedding under my belt it was great that she trusted me so much and we could collaborate our ideas. The wedding went off without an issue, and the couple absolutely loved the images that we both captured.
That is what I hope to begin to do, teach. I look forward to the opportunity to work with this company if I am selected to do so. And if I am not selected that is fine, I know there are other photographers out there that are better than me in some aspects, but that just makes me want to grow more. So what happens if I am not selected by this company to collaborate on these photography guides? I'm not sure in what venue or form of media yet but I will be doing some small guides, pose cards, or possibly even videos.
It is because of all of you that I am able to do the things that I do, so I thank you for that. I look forward to giving you all some good news soon hopefully!